resort restaurant recommendations

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daddylicious's picture
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resort restaurant recommendations

This is our first trip and we are planning an adult only night out with 5 people. (By adult, I just mean we are leaving the teens and kids. We aren't big drinkers.) We are planning on touring the resorts and figured we would eat at one of them. We won't be going into a park that night, and we have another day planned for DTD, so I am specifically trying to pick a resort restaurant. We are looking for an "experience" more so that fantastic food. We don't really care if it's quiet or not. We are leaving the kids mainly because they may be bored on the tour and to save money at dinner. I have been given the job of picking the restaurant and I am leaning towards one of the following, but I am open to all suggestions:

Ohana - It just sounds like a fun, uniquely Disney time. We would probably watch Wishes from Poly Beach.

California Grill - We are going the week before Thanksgiving and I understand it should be open by then. Everything I read about it is good, and if we get an ADR at the right time, I understand there is a good view of Wishes.

Any of the AKL restaurants - From what I have read, I would probably pick Boma or Sanaa. We definitely want to see AKL and both of these sound like a great experience. I love the idea of seeing the animals from the night vision goggles.

WCC - I know this is a bit out of the way, but we don't mind taking our time with this evening. We aren't visiting a park that day. Much like Ohana, this place sounds like a fun, unique experience. However, the antics do sound a little "kiddie" to me.

TIA

Allie's picture
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If you're going solely for a fun experience, I would pick O'Hana. For a great meal and more upscale experience I'd go for California Grill.

Kris1971's picture
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The California Grill is one of my favorite restaurants in all of Disney. If its open when you go, you can't go wrong eating there! My second choice would be Ohana. Everyone raves about the experience and the food. I have yet to go, but it is on my must do list!

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Ohana!!!! (I have never eaten at California Grill, sorry, I have no opinion there) You can tour the resorts, and, depending on what time Wishes starts, you can watch from the beach at the Polynesian Resort either before or after you eat at Ohana. You can see the fireworks from Ohana while you eat, but you are not guaranteed a seat by a window with a view. There is also an water pageant that you can catch from Ohana or from the beach. We get a good view about 50% of the time. The other 50% we are seated next to a window that is covered by foliage or we are not even near a window. We have started watching Wishes and making our reservations at Ohana for about 20 - 30 minutes after Wishes starts.

Oh, and the food is AWESOME! And the dessert is even better! This is our favorite restaurant at WDW. We eat here once or twice a trip, depends on how long we are there.

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daddylicious's picture
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When do they usually do the water pageant? I think our group would like to see that as well.

MrHub's picture
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Hello and welcome to WDWForGrownups! The Water Pageant is usually around 0900 pm:

Polynesian Resort -- 9 p.m.
Grand Floridian -- 9:15 p.m.
Wilderness Lodge -- 9:35 p.m.
Fort Wilderness -- 9:45 p.m.
Contemporary Resort -- 10:05 p.m.
Magic Kingdom -- 10:20 p.m. (only during extended MK park
hours)

When the Fireworks are scheduled for 9 pm the pageant can run up to 20 minutes after.

daddylicious's picture
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If we want to eat at Ohana before the fireworks and then watch them from the beach, how far before the fireworks should I make the ADR? 90 minutes?

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90 minutes should be more than enough time. It takes my family of 4 almost 90 minutes to eat there. We were there in January, my girls were 4 1/2 years old and 22 Months old. If it takes us almost 90 minutes, your all adult party should be able to do it in less. laugh

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MrHub's picture
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Yes I agree 90 minutes should be good.

Doyouwanna's picture
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wait back up! night vision googles?! eek

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Kristen K.'s picture
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daddylicious wrote:

California Grill - We are going the week before Thanksgiving and I understand it should be open by then. Everything I read about it is good, and if we get an ADR at the right time, I understand there is a good view of Wishes.

This would be my pick! Chef Brian's food is amazing, and I'm sure that the atmosphere will continue to be fantastic.

daddylicious's picture
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Doyouwanna wrote:
wait back up! night vision googles?! eek

Yes. I have read that these are available if you dine at the AKL restaurants in the evening. I am not sure if they are available at AKL if you aren't eating there. Maybe someone else here knows.

Kristen K.'s picture
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Yes, the night vision goggles are kept with the guide that's stationed on the savanna overlook. They are available for anyone to use. Smile

MrHub's picture
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Kristen K. wrote:
daddylicious wrote:

California Grill - We are going the week before Thanksgiving and I understand it should be open by then. Everything I read about it is good, and if we get an ADR at the right time, I understand there is a good view of Wishes.

This would be my pick! Chef Brian's food is amazing, and I'm sure that the atmosphere will continue to be fantastic.

I'll second this!

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'Ohana is one of my favorites, open grill kitchen, lots of food brought to your table on skewers, more food if you want, and noisier than California Grill. You might get lucky to see the Wishes fireworks through the windows. We are eating at 'Ohana's twice during our upcoming trip. I tried to get a dinner time at California Grill, but was told it was not available during our Oct. 26-Nov. 8 trip. At CG there is a large lounge/bar area where you first enter the restaurant. Last year I asked for a little quieter section at CG and we were sat in a back room with only a few other tables, all windows, and we were able to see the Epcot fireworks show in the distance during dinner. After dinner we went out on a "private" terrace and we watched the Wishes show. We were told only diners could get out there. I'd say CG is more sophisticated, excellent service, and it's very delicious, but I really liked 'Ohana better. More our type of food.

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MrHub's picture
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Mickey2, the reason it said California Grill is not available is because right now it is under refurb so their reservations are off line. The problem with Ohana's is that they try and rush you out so they can get the next seating in. The food there is very good and you can eat all you want, but I wouldn't call it a relaxing meal.

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Night goggles! Amazing

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robertcraig's picture
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my favourites
TEPAN EDO
NARCOSSEES
ARTIST POINT
CALIFORNIAN GRILL
RAGLAN ROAD

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Narcossees is one of my favorites. We watched wishes from the windows. If you love steak then Yachtman's Steakhouse is a must do. We took time to walk around the YC, BC and boardwalk.

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daddylicious's picture
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These are a lot of great suggestions. We may do some of the boardwalk/Epcot suggestions at another time during the trip. For this particular evening, we want to tour the resorts and eat at one of them. We had a meeting of the minds with the adults last night, and I think we are leaning towards dinner at Ohana then trying to catch Wishes and the water pageant on the beach.

robertcraig's picture
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daddylicious wrote:
These are a lot of great suggestions. We may do some of the boardwalk/Epcot suggestions at another time during the trip. For this particular evening, we want to tour the resorts and eat at one of them. We had a meeting of the minds with the adults last night, and I think we are leaning towards dinner at Ohana then trying to catch Wishes and the water pageant on the beach.

OHANA'S is a great experiance but remember don't have much to eat before you go as you really get a lot to eat

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